'War has reached us' - strike shocks southern Ukrainian village

STORY: On Friday (May 6) Viktor Golovachuk returned from a night shift at his local steel plant in southeastern Ukraine to this.

A munition attack had blown the roof off his house.

Destroying its outbuildings and burying his dog Malysh under rubble.

“There are no military sites here. What, is my house a strategic target? Or my neighbour's? What was there to destroy here?”

The strike landed just after dawn, blasting a wide crater in a quiet cottage-lined street of Viktor's village, around 25 miles from frontline fighting.

Russia calls its actions in Ukraine a "special military operation" and says it is not targeting civilians.

Since February 24, residents say they have gotten used to a soundtrack of blasts and rockets in the distance.

But Friday's strike was the first direct hit here, explains village head Vasily Zakarlyuka.

“First, it's fear. Fear and horror, because the war has reached us now. People were running scared and worried. But everyone is safe and sound, most importantly.”

The shockwave from the explosion shattered windows.

Shrapnel was flung with enough force to pierce the metal fences of houses down the street.

Nobody was home at the time.

Viktor's two sons are fighting with the Ukrainian forces.

His wife has fled to the relative safety of western Ukraine, with their 11-year-old daughter.

She wept when she heard the news, he said.

Standing in the hall, his mother Kateryna is reluctant to abandon the village - home of happy family memories before the war.

If it gets too dangerous, we will leave - she says. But not yet.

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